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Instant Pot Oxtail Pho (Vietnamese Beef Noodle Soup)

An easy way of making Oxtail Pho (Vietnamese Beef Noodle Soup with Oxtail) using the Instant Pot. The oxtail will cook for 2 hours, so the meat will be tender, fall-off-the bone, and the broth is clear, rich, and delicious.
Course Main Course
Cuisine Vietnamese
Keyword Beef Recipe, Pho Recipes
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 2 hours
Total Time 2 hours 15 minutes
Servings 6 servings

Ingredients

To Serve the Pho

  • 1 package rice noodles
  • 1/2 lb thinly sliced beef sirloin (optional)
  • 1 onion, thinly sliced and soaked in cold water for 5-10 minutes
  • Cilantro, roughly chopped
  • Bean sprouts, washed
  • Thai Basil
  • Green onions, some halved and some thinly sliced for garnish
  • Limes, cut into wedges
  • Hoisin sauce and Sriracha sauce

Instructions

  • In a medium saucepan, cover with oxtail with water. Boil on the stove for 5-10 minutes, or until you begin to see foam and gunk. These are the impurities.
  • Drain and rinse the oxtail with cold water.
  • In a small skillet on the stove, toast the pho spices for 1-2 minutes, or until you can smell the fragrance.
    (You can also do this using the Instant Pot, but I think the skillet makes it easier.)
  • Put the toasted spices into the cheesecloth bag provided in the kit.
  • On "Saute" mode of the Instant Pot, add the onion and ginger. Dry roast them until they are slightly burnt.
  • Turn off the Instant Pot. Add the cleaned oxtail. Then add water until the Max line of the Instant Pot. Add the spice bag. Season with 1/4 cup of fish sauce and 1/4 cup of sugar.
  • Close the lid of the Instant Pot. Set to "Manual" for 120 minutes.
  • You can manually release the pressure, or let it naturally release. (This depends on how much time you have, and how hungry you are to eat. Both work fine.)
    Taste the broth. Add more fish sauce or sugar, if desired.
  • Discard the ginger, onion, and spice bag. Remove the oxtail. Set it aside on a plate.

Serving the Oxtail Pho

  • If you are using dry rice noodles, soak it in water for 20 minutes. If you're using fresh noodles, no need to soak.
    Bring a pot of water to a boil. Add the desired amount of noodle into the water and let cook for 1-2 minutes until soft (but not too mushy or overcooked).
  • Put the cooked noodles in a bowl. Add a handful of bean sprouts on top. Add sliced sirloin beef, if desired. (This is optional. I find it's nice to have multiple types of beef in your pho). Then top with the sliced onions, chopped scallions/green onions. Add one or two oxtail. (You can serve it whole with the bone, or you can remove the meat beforehand).
    Meanwhile, bring the pho broth to a boil using the "Saute" function of the Instant Pot.
    Ladle the boiling hot soup into the bowl, making sure to cover the sliced sirloin. Add a dash of black pepper, if desired. Sprinkle cilantro.
    Enjoy with a slice of lime, hoisin and Sriracha sauce.